Printer Friendly

Aronex Pharmaceuticals Reports Responses Using ATRAGEN(R) as a Treatment for Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma.

- ATRAGEN(R) Non-Hodgkin's Lymphoma Phase II Trial Expanded -

THE WOODLANDS, Texas, June 28 /PRNewswire/ -- Aronex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. (Nasdaq: ARNX), a biopharmaceutical company focused on proprietary medicines to treat cancer and infectious diseases, announced today that it has seen responses in its early-stage Phase II evaluation of ATRAGEN(R) in the treatment of relapsed or refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients. ATRAGEN is a liposomal formulation of all-trans-retinoic acid (ATRA) being developed for the treatment of hematologic malignancies and solid tumors. Based on the preliminary review of the data, the Company will expand the current Phase II protocol to include other sites in the United States. In addition to non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, ATRAGEN is being evaluated in early-stage clinical trials in prostate cancer, renal cell carcinoma and bladder cancer.

In commenting on the preliminary findings, Andreas Sarris, M.D., Department of Lymphoma/Myeloma at The University of Texas M. D. Anderson Cancer Center, said, "We are encouraged by the response seen with ATRAGEN in the treatment of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma in a difficult patient population who have failed prior therapy. We feel that this preliminary data provides a strong basis for the continued evaluation of this product in an expanded trial."

The preliminary Phase II study, initiated in mid-1998, was designed to evaluate ATRAGEN's ability to induce a response in relapsed or refractory non-Hodgkin's lymphoma patients. ATRAGEN is being administered intravenously at 120m/m2 three times per week. The protocol is designed to enroll patients with B-cell, T-cell or T-cell cutaneous lymphomas.

"Our thesis has been that ATRAGEN's liposomal formulation enables patients to be treated with all-trans-retinoic acid over longer periods of time and reaches consistently high plasma concentrations," said Geoffrey F. Cox, Ph.D., Chairman and CEO of Aronex Pharmaceuticals. "We believe that this positive clinical data confirm the previously published in vitro data showing ATRAGEN's ability to inhibit the growth of B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphoma. We are very pleased that these preliminary data appear to support our thesis and encourage us to expand the non-Hodgkin's lymphoma study."

According to the American Cancer Society, there are more than 55,000 cases of non-Hodgkin's lymphoma diagnosed every year. This clinical indication was chosen based on the in vitro work of Richard Ford, M.D. Ph.D. of M. D. Anderson Cancer Center. In the October 1997 issue of Cell Growth & Differentiation, Dr. Ford reported that ATRAGEN is substantially more potent than free ATRA in inhibiting the growth of B-cell non-Hodgkin's lymphomas taken from patients. Other retinoids have shown modest inhibition of cell growth and only at considerably higher concentrations. In addition, ATRAGEN induced a high level of apoptosis (programmed cell death). Experiments conducted by Dr. Ford reported that transcriptional control of bcl-2 by ATRAGEN is one possible mechanism by which the drug acts in non-Hodgkin's lymphoma B cells.

In December 1998, the Company filed a New Drug Application with the United States Food and Drug Administration for ATRAGEN for the treatment of patients with acute promyelocytic leukemia, for whom therapy with tretinoin is necessary but for whom an intravenous administration is required.

Aronex Pharmaceuticals, Inc. is a biopharmaceutical company that develops and commercializes proprietary innovative medicines to treat cancer and infectious diseases. Aronex Pharmaceuticals currently has five products in clinical development, two of which (ATRAGEN(R) and NYOTRAN(R)) are in an advanced stage, as well as a pipeline of additional products.

Any statements which are not historical facts, including statements regarding the Company's clinical development programs and the expected timing of clinical trials and NDA filings, contained in this release are forward looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties, including but not limited to those relating to product demand, pricing, market acceptance, the effect of economic conditions, intellectual property rights and litigation, clinical trials, governmental regulation, competitive products, risks in product and technology development, the results of financing efforts, the ability to complete transactions and other risks identified in the Company's Securities and Exchange Commission filings.
COPYRIGHT 1999 PR Newswire Association LLC
No portion of this article can be reproduced without the express written permission from the copyright holder.
Copyright 1999 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

Article Details
Printer friendly Cite/link Email Feedback
Publication:PR Newswire
Geographic Code:1USA
Date:Jun 28, 1999
Previous Article:'Brooklyn Battles Blindness' as Pfizer Plant Launches Shipment of Sight-Saving Antibiotic Zithromax.
Next Article:CNET Launches New Features for High-Speed Users.

Terms of use | Copyright © 2018 Farlex, Inc. | Feedback | For webmasters